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Funding news still hasn’t slowed down for this alleged “summer lull” I keep hearing about. I guess that’s one of the problems with San Francisco summers — they are so cold, people forget to take vacations and insist on churning out products and raising venture capital. It may be all beaches and relaxing in other locations around the country, but here in S.F., the deals continue to flow. If only I had a margarita for every deal that went down. On second thought, that may not be such a good idea. That’s about eight margaritas more than I can handle.
Rocket Internet’s The Iconic raises $25.8M to conquer the Australian market
Rocket Internet’s The Iconic has raised $25.8 million ($28 million in Australian dollars) to cement its position as Australia’s leading online fashion retailer. The Iconic sells apparel, shoes, accessories, and and beauty products for women, men, and children with flexible return policies and reasonably priced shipping. It is the latest in Rocket’s rapidly expanding portfolio of heavily funded e-commerce startups in international markets. Belgian holding company Verlinvest led the round, with participation from existing investors AB Kinnevik and Summit Partners, which frequently invest in Rocket companies. Read more on VentureBeat.
With $2.5M in funding, Mind Pirate will chase wearable and augmented reality games
Mind Pirate is coming out of stealth mode today with $2.5 million in funding and a plan to create games for new platforms such as augmented reality and wearable devices. The Menlo Park, Calif.-based Mind Pirate was founded last fall by Shawn Hardin, who was previously an entrepreneur-in-residence at Bessemer Venture Partners. The startup acquired mobile game developer Twyngo and raised money from Bessemer and Rick Thompson’s Signia Venture Partners. It has ambitions to create games for the next generation of mobile technology, but it will also make games tailored for the sensors and touchscreens of current smartphones and tablets. Read more on VentureBeat.
Comprehend gets $8.4M from Sequoia to mine clinical data
Comprehend Systems wants to simplify the approval process for medical device makers. Today the company filed for a $8.4 million first round of funding led by prestigious venture firm, Sequoia Capital. Silicon Valley-based Comprehend has developed the requisite tools for customers in the life sciences sector to collect data, and most importantly, mine it for relevant “insights.” With this information, Comprehend is in a stronger position to receive FDA approval and bring new devices and drugs to market, which will benefit patients. Read more on VentureBeat.
BackOps raises $7M to grow workforce of moms making business better
BackOps provides cloud-based accounting, HR, and finance services on a subscription basis. Its approach combines software with the expertise of a crowd sourced pool of stay-at-home moms, known as “riveters,” who help businesses keep their back office operations running smoothly. Today the company announced raising $7 million to add more riveters into its ranks and scale its platform. Shervin Pishevar’s Sherpa Ventures and e.ventures led this round, with participating from Google Ventures and seed investor CrunchFund and Mark Pincus. This is the first investment for Sherpa Ventures, and Pishevar said in a statement that BackOps is a defining company in the sharing economy space. Read more on VentureBeat. Read more on VentureBeat.
Breakthrough raises $5M to improve access to mental health care for millions
Breakthrough has raised $5 million to make mental health care more accessible through its online counseling and telepsychiatry service. Breakthrough allows you to get “therapy from your own couch” by connecting you with licensed mental health professionals who conduct sessions via live video. This first round of financing was led by The Social+Capital Partnership with participation from First Round Capital and Great Oaks Venture Capital. Read more on VentureBeat. Read more on VentureBeat.
FreedomPop gears up for its free mobile service with $5M in funding
After announcing its plan to launch completely free cellular plans, FreedomPop has scored another $5 million from existing investors DCM Capital and Mangrove Capital. The Los Angeles-based company started out offering free mobile data service via an iPod Touch case and mobile hotspots, and it also recently announced a home router with free mobile data. Everything FreedomPop has done has been leading up to the launch of completely free cellular plans. The news brings FreedomPop’s total funding to $16 million. The company claims that its valuation has also doubled (though it hasn’t yet revealed what that figure is). Read more on VentureBeat.
Touch of Modern ‘resolves its differences’ with Fab, nabs $3M
Touch of Modern has resolved its legal differences with Fab, making it a safer bet for investors. Touch of Modern is a flash sale site that connects consumers with a curated selection of designers. The company today netted $3 million in venture funding, led by Floodgate Fund with participation from existing investors Hillsven Capital. Read more on VentureBeat.
VideoElephant raises $1 million to grow its video marketplace bigger
Irish startup VideoElephant has landed $1 million in funding from ACT Venture Capital and Enterprise Ireland to fund its video content marketplace. VideoElephant is a trading hub where content creators can monetize videos by enabling web publishers that need high volumes of video content to access their videos. The library includes over 50,000 pieces of content from a range of genres.
Umano raises $1M seed round for its news-on-tape app
Umano has raised $1 million for its on-the-go news app. Umano is an on-the-go news app that turns print articles into audio. Umano features a new selection of curated articles every day, read by professional voice actors so it sounds like a real news broadcast. The round was co-led by Birchmere Ventures and Digital Garage, with participation from early Facebook adviser Karl Jacob and angels including several Google employees.
Nanosatisfi raises $300K to make space more accessible
U.S.-based Nanosatisfi announces a $300,000 investment from Grishin Robotics, a firm financed by a Russian entrepreneur. Nanosatisfi has built a space and data imaging platform that offers affordable and convenient access to space. Nanosatisfi makes nano satellites that are equipped with cameras and various sensors. The collected data has possible applications in science education, weather analysis, and for governmental or military purposes. The company’s mission is to give access to nanosatellites in space to any person in the world for just $250/week. The company will use the funds to build new nanosatellites, secure launches for them, and extend the team of engineers.
VB’s research team is studying mobile user acquisition: Chime in here, and we’ll share the results.